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April 23, 2012 04:00
Some excerpts from the journal of Salhadin,

… Up until now I had been relatively unassociated with the investigation into professor Scale. I always seemed to be elsewhere, but finally Thaljun called upon my assistance as he travelled to Specularum to further uncover the secret plot. During the first day, Thaljun had no direct need of my assistance, so I handled some mundane business in the city. I noticed that the streets seemed to be full of tension. Besides the economic problems being caused by the false money, a racial dispute seemed to be brewing between the Traldarians and the Thyatians. My family had been disenfranchised when the Duke came, but I have never held a grudge. Yes, my station was reduced in life, but the Duke has sincerely tried to improve the country, and he appears to be much more progressive than the old Traldarian nobility, under whose backward ways the country had been stagnant. Unfortunately, it appeared many of my countrymen here in Specularum did not see things the way I did.

When I returned to the party, Thaljun and Relhor seemed overly depressed, and the responsibility of uncovering the plot fell upon the shoulders of the three warriors: Myself, Elias, and Hakim. Elias has no great tradition of thinking hard, nor do I, and Hakim is still quite inexperienced, which added up into a peculiar investigative party. When it comes to serious thinking, I had learned to always rely on Thaljun, the true intellectual among us, but it now seemed his emotions seriously clouded his judgment.

With the help of Thaljun’s illusion seeking wand we discovered which of the aristocratic houses appeared to house the culprits. We chose to enter illegally through a back servant’s entrance, not wanting to waste any more time than we had already done. We entered cautiously, not knowing if this was an inhabited house of the Tournesque family, or just one of their old holdings. We followed the aura of illusion into the basement, and there saw professor Scale, standing before a shimmering portal! He told us we were too late, and indeed the only trace of the false gold was the debris of some small rocks. He told us that soon the Emperor would know, and proceeded to step through the portal as he dropped a pulsating gem. Immediately expecting something bad from this gem, which began to pulse faster and faster, we retrieved the planer gate to the Fire realm from Thaljun, and I tossed it in with only a second to spare. The party took a sigh of relief as neither we nor the house had been destroyed, but unfortunately professor Scale had escaped.

Thaljun indicated that he might be able to locate the exit point of the portal if he were in his study back in Glantri. For a moment, we thought this would be the best course of action, but then we considered the words of professor Scale “the Emperor would know soon”. There was only one Emperor, the mighty Emperor of Thyatis. It dawned on us that the gold must be on its way to Thyatis, to launder the false money into their society for real goods, but to what purpose? It could bring the perpetrators wealth, but could also quickly expose their fraud. We went to the docks and spoke with a dock manager named Uric in an effort to identify which ship could be carrying the Gold. I still have a difficult time dealing with government officials, having lived for so long on the wrong side of the law, and furthermore, living in a society where “mundaners” such as myself have no rights. Despite my lack of tact in communicating with the dock manager, we discovered that the merchant ship “The Kattering” had left 3 days ago bound for Thyatis.

After a little planning, Thaljun cast fly upon all of us and teleported the party to Thyatis bay- the distance of that spell still amazes me! We quickly identified “The Kattering” and in our haste to prevent the ship from docking, boarded the ship without first hailing it. The captain and first mate were understandably extremely angry, but did not begin battle with us. We assumed, at first, that they were in on the deal, but after listening to our story they seemed genuinely concerned. This was confirmed when Thaljun used his magic to reveal the whole load of false gold they were carrying. Captain Skyrie immediately had the ship turned around, and sent his first mate, Borgis, with us as we teleported back to Specularum in a hope of intercepting their false investors.

We were disappointed to discover that the investment office had been totally cleared out, but we were also not very surprised. It was becoming clearer that the intent of this enterprise was not money, but the destabilization of relations between Karameikos and the Empire! We waited for the ship to return, and accompanied Captain Skyrie, with all his fake gold, to the Duke’s Seneschal, Lord Alexius Korrigan. Captain Skyrie’s renown as a Karameiken trader got us an audience quickly. I had never before seen Lord Korrigan, he was large, atleast 6 ft tall, with shaggy black hair and resembled a bear. We presented the false gold to Lord Korrigan, using Thaljun’s wand to reveal the false gold. He summoned the court mage to confirm Thaljun’s magical aptitude. The mage, named Telden, was very old, with a white beard and bright blue eyes. He approved of Thaljun’s wand, and assessed its value. Lord Korrigen than offered to purchase it from us, and we took his offer of 6,000 gold. He then asked us to find greater evidence against the counterfeiters which linked them to a specific individual, and bid us good luck.

Captain Skyrie left for his ship, offering his services should ever we need them. We returned to our inn, only to hear that Davinos, the main political figurehead in the Traldarian dispute against the Thyatians, had been carted off by some “official looking” people, but the man who told us knew one of them to be a thief. We reacted so quickly we could hardly get a look at this man as we darted in the direction he indicated. We arrived only to see Davinos assassinated by 4 men in maroon hats. The group of assassins fled, with exception to one, who managed to incapacitate both myself and Elias with his poisonous blade! The dishonor was immense, but Hakim proved himself effective in battling the assassin. Unfortunately, the assassin’s comrades feared his capture, and double backed to silence him, and succeeded before Hakim could capture him. A large crowd of people gathered, and a man started a real tumult by shouting that the Thyatians had murdered Davinos.

We returned to the inn as things started to get more serious in the streets. A man, tall and thin, dressed in purple robes and strolling with a silver headed cane, approached our table and introduced himself as Anelio the Great. He was a performer, but claimed to represent some high ranking official and wanted any information on the assassins that we could uncover. We consented and he left us. We were then joined by Jax, the mentor of Relhor, who helped us recall the look of the man who pointed us to Davinos assassins.

As we attempted to visit this man, we encountered a riot, and it appeared that the guards standing up to the riot were in serious trouble. We attempted to intervene, I told the party to follow me closely since I was the “most trained” at shoving people out of the way. My “training” yielded only failure, as we all tripped and fell in a big pile. However, we accomplished our original task by distracting the riot long enough for reinforcements with riot gear to arrive and disperse the crowd. We then intercepted the man we were looking for, and he pointed us back to the dock manager Uric in search of a pearl islander named Ordu. This circle was starting to become dizzying!

Just as we arrived at Uric’s office, we spotted Ordu and began to pursue. We ended up in an alleyway, facing several maroon hooded figures- the assassins of Davinos. They attempted to engage us, but in a single blow Elias chopped one completely in half. The others attempted to flee, and one tried to take some poison, but I stopped him and pinned him to the ground. The crowd gathered around, and the assassin, a Traldarian, revealed that he and the Vailed Society had assassinated Davinos. The people were stunned that their own countrymen had been behind the assassination; especially one particular man who I still believe was actually in on the plot to destabilize the country because of how zealously he pushed the riots forward. With the crisis averted, Lord Korrigan invited us to dine with him, and the following day we returned to Blofeld.

Our efforts have indicated to me that this plot is not aimed at anything less than complete chaos in Karameikos. I do not know why this is their intent, but the enemies of the Duke have dealt their hand and have failed. I hope that we have disrupted all of their efforts. It now remains for us to find Professor Scale and bring him to justice. If we are able to capture him, than I believe he will reveal all the other conspirators…

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Karameikos onsilius Salhadin